Disaster crash on the way to casino kills eight
What was supposed to be a day of fun turned into disaster for seniors who were on their way to the Caluso Casino Resort in Sacramento when their charter bus crashed. Casinos in Northern California offer free meals, complimentary slot machine play and cheap transportation to senior citizens from surrounding towns. A spokesperson for the casino said that they had not chartered this particular bus although they have been using the company since 2006. Relatives of the victims said that the bus company sent recruiters to their town and seniors who wanted to go to the casino paid for the trip.
Opponents of gambling say that casinos are unscrupulous and are using cheap charter bus services to lure the elderly to gamble and they are calling for an educational program to teach the elderly about the risks of gambling. Studies have shown that the likely problem gamblers are not those over 65 but rather the low income groups and the disabled. Seniors themselves are saying that they are lured the casinos by the nightly prizes, quality restaurants and the chance to get out of their homes.
The driver of the bus was arrested at the scene of the crash. Officials said that the driver did not have a license to carry passengers and that the vehicle had an invalid license plate. Investigation into the cause of the crash is continuing.